Mary WollstonecroftIn 1792 a book written by the lady whose portrait adorns the above stamp issued by Great Britain in 2009 became the first book to be published in the English language on the subject of what we now might call feminism.

That lady was Mary Wollstonecroft, whose book “A Vindication of the Rights of Women” could possibly have been influenced by Frenchwoman Olympe de Gouges whose pamphlet “Déclaration des droits de la femme et de la citoyenne” (Declaration of the Rights of Woman and of the [Female] Citizen), was published in France in 1791. This was written in response to the 1789 document known as the “Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the (Male) Citizen” (Déclaration des droits de l’homme et du citoyen). Gouges’s manifesto asserted that women are equal to men in society and, as such, entitled to the same citizenship rights.

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In 1955 Hungary became the first country in the world to issue a “metal” stamp. And below you see an example. Aluminium foil glued to paper was used in the production process.

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Stamp ChinaPostBeeld owner Rob Smit is constantly busy seeking out opportunities to add stamps to the enormously varied stock held at the four PostBeeld stores dotted around Holland. Always on the lookout to buy-in interesting collections at auction houses or directly from people wishing to sell, he fervently strives to provide what his customers might be looking for.

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Donald Trump postage stampWell, 2016 has certainly provided surprises on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean in the world of politics. First we had the referendum result in Great Britain to leave the European Union, and now the shock of a person with no experience as a politician being elected as the President of the United States.

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Mascots on stampsWe know Olympic Games stamps are a popular theme for many stamp collectors and as our parent company, PostBeeld (postbeeld.com), has recently added many stamps on this subject to its stock thought this article about Olympic Games mascots might be of interest to some. The first Olympic mascot, though not official, was named “Schuss” and was born at the Grenoble Olympic Winter Games in 1968. Representing a little man on skis, half-way between an object and a person, it was the first manifestation of a long line of mascots which continue to this day.

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New issued stampsDay after day new postage stamps are issued depicting a variety of topics. Here are some examples of recently issued stamps featuring a variety of topics.

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Maya Angelou stamp with wrong quoteThe United States Postal Service (USPS) unveiled a stamp last Tuesday to honor the late poet Maya Angelou. The presentation was attended by Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey. Maya Angelou is depicted on this stamp with the quote ‘A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song’. Unfortunately this quote is not one of Angelou’s.

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Propaganda on stampsTo use postage stamps as propaganda material is not unusual. Many countries have issued these kind of stamps in the past and in all likelihood some will continue to do so in the future. This is certainly the case in times of war, when propaganda can be deployed on all fronts, including postage stamps. In the ‘Cold War’ much propaganda was used, especially as it lasted so long.

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Stamp goofsWherever people work, mistakes will be made. The business of postage stamp design is no exception. Many stamps have been issued with design flaws or flaws of a different nature. And these are of great interest to many collectors. Below we illustrate where some stamp designers have used what might be called ‘artistic licence’.

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Children Camp Stamps North KoreaNorth Korea recently issued a few stamps that caught our attention. The first, pictured here, showing a group of seemingly happy, sportily-clad children flocking admiringly around the great leader Kim Jong-un. Such a scene on a North Korean stamp is not very unique of course – it was the text printed in the bottom right-hand corner of the stamp sheet that made us curious.

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